Based on what I have read on social media (and what I have personally been feeling since last night), there are a lot of people who are hurting today. Hurting because their dream didn’t come true, their candidate didn’t win, and they are worried about what Trump being president will mean for all our futures. I get it. The last 18 months has been horrific. Cruel, racist, sexist things have been said by Trump (Hillary’s behavior was also far from perfect!), and it’s left a very bad taste in our mouths. My hope is that Trump said many of those things for shock-value and to drum up attention. Well, he got attention, and he got votes, and now he will be president. And that means we now need to unite as one people to support him and help him to turn things around in our country.
I wanted a woman to be president. Really badly. Not because I thought Hillary was the best candidate, but to me she seemed the better one. It was also a straight feminist play. I was “with her” so that my little girls could see a woman sitting in the oval office, and grow up knowing they could truly do anything. (I felt the same way about seeing the first African-American in the oval office.) But here is what I realized recently – that message about “doing anything” doesn’t come from seeing a female president, it comes from parents who build their children up, hold them accountable, and instill in them the belief that they can do anything. When my girls whimpered that they were sad that Trump was president because he said really bad words and wasn’t nice to women, I told them that all people make mistakes and now that Trump has been elected, I hope that he will do better. He will clean up his act and be fair, consistent, and kind – just like Daddy and I try to be with them in our home. I reminded them that there is always a winner and a loser in elections, and feeling disappointed that a woman didn’t win was okay. I also reminded them that we still have never had a female president, and since women are so amazingly incredible, we have to continue to work really hard to make that happen. And then we talked a little bit about how we need really smart boys and girls to study hard and step forward to become politicians in the future. I told them, they are our future.
They are the future and we need to help them see the value in our political system, and in voting. They and we are America. We are a democracy, and because of that we have to accept what happened. It is no time to flee. It is not a time to mope. It is a time to say, “What can I do to help our country get back to great?” This morning as I lay in bed staring at the ceiling I thought about the desperately poor Americans living in banged up cities, unemployed and hopeless. And I prayed that Trump makes good on what he promised and makes their lives better. I live in Greenwich, CT, and am very privileged to have health insurance, a great school for my kids to attend, and food on the table. I’d like all Americans to have a roof over their head, a good education, healthcare and hope. That is why I am asking our president, “Please make good on your words. Make America better. Shrink the national debt. Make better healthcare for all. Take care of all of us, no matter our religion, sex, sexual persuasion, or heritage. I am watching you and I plan on holding you accountable. You are now the leader of one of the most powerful countries in the world. It’s a big job and I pray you are up for the challenge.”
Hope. Unite. Don’t give up. And make it better. We can all do these things.